Supreme Court rejects high school restroom case
by Kiley Crossland
Posted 5/29/19, 11:38 am
The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to hear the case of a group of Pennsylvania high school students who sued their school district for allowing students who identify as transgender to use the restrooms and locker rooms of the opposite sex. Without informing students or parents, the Boyertown Area School District implemented the policy during the 2016-17 school year, leaving some students shocked to find classmates of the opposite sex in their changing rooms and restrooms. Six students, represented by Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) and the Independence Law Center, filed suit against the district, arguing administrators violated their fundamental right to bodily privacy under the U.S. Constitution and effectively denied them access to school facilities on the basis of sex. They appealed their case, Doe v. Boyertown Area School District, to the Supreme Court last November after the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found the students’ right to privacy came second to transgender individuals’ rights to use the facilities of their choice.
“No student’s recognized right to bodily privacy should be made contingent on what other students believe about their own gender,” John Bursch, ADF senior counsel and vice president of appellate advocacy, said. “Because the 3rd Circuit’s decision made a mess of bodily privacy and Title IX principles, we believe the Supreme Court should have reviewed it. But we hope the court will take up a similar case in the future to bring much needed clarity to how the lower courts should handle violations of well-established student privacy rights.”
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